April 26, 2023


Eli “Melon” Nicholas Henderson, 11

Eli “Melon” Nicholas Henderson, age 11, was taken too soon on Saturday, April 15, 2023. He was born in Freeport, IL on July 21, 2011 to Amanda Kriebs and Don Henderson. He was a member of Holy Cross Catholic Church in Stockton.

Eli was a 6th grader at Stockton Middle School. He was outgoing, quick witted, hardworking, and a comedian who loved to put a smile on everyone’s face. Eli loved sports and was a proud member of the Stockton Renegades Wrestling Club. He was #55 for the Stockton 39ers where he played center and defensive tackle. He also played catcher for the Stockton baseball team. Eli loved fishing, bowling, grilling out, and welding with his dad.

He will be deeply missed by his parents, Amanda Kriebs and Don (Lauribeth) Henderson; his brothers, Mason Henderson and Jaylen Kriebs; his grandparents, Michael (Sue) Kriebs and Gary (Vicki) Henderson; his great grandmothers, Peggy Magee and Diane Reding; his aunts, Abigail Kriebs and Ashli (John) Span; his uncles, Aaron Kriebs, Alex (Meghan) Kriebs, and Kevin Henderson; his cousins, Mikaila, Gannon, Taylynn, Knox, Kye and Lennon; as well as an abundance of other cousins, friends, and family members. He was preceded in death by his great grandfathers, Don Reding, Larry Henderson, Richard Magee, and Arnold Kriebs; and his great grandmothers, Phyllis Reding, Joyce Henderson, and Eleanor Kriebs.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, April 22, 2023 at the Stockton Middle School Gym at 10:30 a.m. with Father Michael Morrissey officiating. There was a visitation on Friday, April 21, 2023 also at the Middle School Gym from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. A memorial fund has been established. Condolences may be shared at


Lucille Karnatz, 97

Lucille Karnatz, age 97, passed away peacefully at the Lena Living Center in the morning hours of Thursday, April 13, 2023, with the full faith and expectation that eternal life awaits.

She was born Lucille Bernice Ferguson on September 10, 1925, In Lena, IL where she attended Lena schools. She graduated from Lena High School where she met her life partner Marvin Karnatz. They married on December 1, 1943, during Marvin’s first military leave and immediately departed to Edmonton, Alberta to make their first home. Unexpectedly, it was largely a long-distance relationship because Marvin was stationed in the Yukon Territory - over a thousand miles away.

Following the war years, Lucille settled with Marvin in the western suburbs of Chicago and lived in Aurora, IL for over 40 years. During that time, she was a devoted stay at home mom to three children - occasionally working outside the home to support the family’s love of travel around the United States.

In the late Sixties, she began working for the Illinois Department of Public Health - a move that, in part, helped to rekindle a long-term interest in healthcare. That led to her decision, at age 50, to attend college to become a Registered Nurse.

Lucille’s career in nursing spanned almost 20 years and included experience in medical offices, hospitals, and hospice care. However, she considered her time at Marianjoy, a well-known rehabilitation center in Wheaton, IL as her most challenging and rewarding contribution.

Lucille and Marvin maintained strong ties with family and friends in Lena. They kept a second home there and, on retirement in 1989, returned as full-time residents. Lucille was active in the community and focused much of her energy at St. John’s Lutheran Church where she was active as a learner, a quilter, and a parish nurse.

Lucille is survived by a daughter, Nancy (Jeff) Hering of Rochester, New York and 2 sons, Jim (Peggy) Karnatz of Indianola, Iowa and John (Billie) Karnatz of Bartlett, IL, she also leaves behind seven grandchildren and nine great grandchildren as well as brothers in law Vernon Karnatz of Maineschaff, Germany and Norman Wybourn of Lena. She considered long term caregivers Alyssa and Janna Saxby to be family and held a special place in her heart for grandnephew Joshua Karnatz.

She is mourned by a strong and supportive extended family, steadfast churchmates, delightful neighbors and many, many friends. She was preceded in death by husband Marvin in 2016.

Funeral services were held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday April 18, 2023, at St. John’s Lutheran Church of Lena with a visitation from 10:00 a.m. until time of service. Visitation was held on Monday, April 17, 2023, from 4:00 p.m.- 7:00 pm at St. John’s Lutheran Church. Condolences may be sent to:

Remembrances may be made to St. John’s of Lena, FHN Hospice of Freeport, IL, or any worthy charity.

Steven Eldred Hulbert, 71

Steven Hulbert passed away on Sunday, April 16th at Swedish American Hospital in Rockford, Illinois after brief illness at the age of 71. He was the oldest of 5 children to Eldred and Phyllis (Rayhorn) Hulbert.

Steven was a 1969 graduate of Lena Winslow High School and a graduate of Northern Illinois University.

He was preceded in death by his parents and niece Mellissa Shumaker.

Steven is survived by sisters, Jeannette (David) Fransen of Springfield OR., Tina (Neil) Diddens of McConnell, IL, Gail (Robert) Werkheiser of Stockton, IL, and brother Nick (Tracey) Hulbert of McConnell, IL, and several nieces, nephews, cousins, and dear friends.

Cremation rites have been accorded. A private family burial will take place at Lena Burial Park Cemetery, Lena Illinois.

Condolences may be sent to the family at

Cathy Aurand, 53

Cathy Aurand, 53, of Lena, Illinois passed away unexpectedly on April 19, 2023 at Swedish American Hospital in Rockford, Illinois surrounded with her family by her side.

Cathy was born on May 25, 1969 in Rockford to Donald and Ann (Bivens) Taylor. She attended Rockford Lutheran High School and graduated from Phil Campbell High School in Alabama in 1987. Cathy married Bob Aurand on October 21, 2009 in Galena. Cathy worked previously as an EMT for the Blackhawk Fire Department. Most recently, Cathy enjoyed staying home to spend time with her loving grandchildren.

Cathy enjoyed cooking, Friday night fish fry’s, watching her favorite TV shows, tending to her plants, having bonfires with her friends and family, and spoiling her grandchildren. Cathy was very much a people pleaser.

Cathy is survived by her husband Bob of Lena, their children; Kayla (Shaun) Stephens of Rockford, Kelsey (Brandon) Gilbert of Lena, Hailey (Josh G.) Carr of Lena, Mandy (Brett) Brooker of South Wayne, WI, Ben Aurand of Warren, Dusty (Alicia) Sigafus of South Wayne, WI, and Eddie (Jackie) Sigafus of Freeport, grandchildren; Keileigh, Kaisley, Kenleigh, Kyzer, Kylynn, Logan, Sophia, Laine, Zander, Lyla, Elsie, Kaylee, Zoey, Josie, Zach, Addison, Evan, and Layla, her mother; Ann Jones of Rockford, her siblings; Linda Shine of Byron, Russell Jones of Michigan, and Jeana (Chuck) Keen of Roscoe, several nieces, nephews, and many special friends.

She was preceded in death by her fathers; Donald Taylor and Ralph Jones, her son; Zachary Joseph, grandson; Kyler Russell, and her beloved dog Molly.

A memorial service will be held at 12:00 Noon on Wednesday, April 26, 2023 at the Leamon Funeral Home, in Lena. Immediately following the services, a celebration of life will be held at the Lena Community Center (497 Lions Drive). Sean Huguenin will officiate the services.

Cremation rites have been accorded. Condolences may be sent to the family at


Rebecca J. Neuenschwander, 68

Rebecca J. Neuenschwander, 68, of Orangeville, IL passed away peacefully in her sleep at Rachel’s Choice in Monroe, WI, on Friday, April 14, 2023. Becky was born on August 8, 1954 in Monroe, WI to Gerald and Rosetta (Baertschi) Mayer. She was a 1972 graduate of Monticello High School. Becky loved her family. She was also an excellent cook, which led to her owning and operating Ye Old Huckelberry Inn, in Orangeville, IL for 12 years.

Becky is survived by her children; Jennifer (Thad) Hanson, of Freeport, IL, Bradley Mayer of Monroe, WI, Sherry (Dan) Stepaniak of Gladwin, MI, Mary (Paritosh) Bhole of Cherokee Village, AR, her grandchildren; Vincent Ott, Cody (Cyndle) Ott, Alisha Ott, Parker Beck, her great-grandchildren; Xander, Franklin, Amaya, her brothers and sisters; Sharon (Jim) Andrews, Kris Squier, Diane (Dewy) Curran, Tim (Stacey) Mayer, Melanie Drake, Shelly (James) Stauffacher.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her sisters Jaquelyn Mayer and Marsha Gempler, and her brother Ed Mayer.

A celebration of life was from 11:00 AM until 3:00 PM on Friday, April 21, 2023 at the Moose Lodge (369 3rd Ave) in Monroe, WI. A private family burial will take place at Sunset Acres in Orangeville.

A memorial has been established in her memory. Condolences may be sent to the family at


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